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Monday, January 21, 2019

Ten Things of Thankful 21st Jan 2109

21st Jan 2019

Today I'm joining the TTOT - Ten Things of Thankful . If you go to :

tenthingsofthankful.blogspot.com

you'll find others who are taking up the challenge.

I always find it difficult to get my life back on track in January.
It did occur to me that making resolutions at the beginning of the year is much too difficult , especially when you consider that we are usually tired with having lived through/survived the Christmas season. Now don't get me wrong I do love Christmas, but apart from Church involvement there's lot of socialising  with family and friends and of course, the overeating and drinking too much. And, because, as a family, we keep the twelve days of Christmas, ie 25th Dec- 6th Jan,  we are still celebrating when people are making their new year's resolutions. So, it doesn't quite work.
So my proposal is, let's start our new year at the beginning of February. It makes sense.
So, that's what I'm aiming for this year. It gives me a few more weeks to get myself together and get my head around what I might want to do to make improvements in my life in 2019.

I'm getting distracted. Here's my ten things of thankful :

1. For the daylight which is lengthening as each new dawn. This morning it was getting light at 6.45 where we live and in the afternoon yesterday it was after four before I had to put lights on at home. So, we're getting there. I love the journey into spring . Next month we'll have at least another hour of daylight. And then another two in march . I look forward to that so much.
2. Following on from the last one, I'm thankful for my eyesight that gives me so much pleasure. Even the colours as I look out of my window. The brown of the tress silhouetted against a blue sky, grey shadows of plants and fence on the green grass.   The sun glinting off the glass in my husband's studio. A little robin with his red breast sitting on the fence.
That I can see the smile of my husband and my children and grandchildren.
On my birthday some of them came to visit and what a picture it was see them together around the table - healthy and happy.
3. I'm thankful that I'm fit enough to go for walks - legs still good. And I'm particularly thankful that I did an 11 km walk with my daughter and future daughter in law last Saturday, along the clifftop with the sea a glassy picture to our left ( well, to our right on our way back, obviously) and a beautiful view of Reculver Towers (look it up). It was such a precious time. We talked, laughed and encouraged each other. What happy memories we make

Image may contain: 3 people, including Marian Green, people smiling, people standing, sky, ocean and outdoor

4. I'm thankful for the enjoyment of good books and that I belong to a book group that pushes me to try things that otherwise I might not. We've just read THUG ( The Hate You Give) by Angie Thomas. Unexpectedly I enjoyed it. Not something I'd pick up for myself. Before that I'd read and enjoyed The Tattooer  of Auschwitz, which I thoroughly recommend.
5. Only at number five? Here we go then. I'm thankful that we have enough to eat, especially when I think that so many don't have much even in this country.  Food banks don't seem to touch the  tip of the iceberg. I would hate to think that anybody didn't have enough to eat.
6. And, along the same lines, I'm so thankful that we have a house (home) to live in. This time of year is deadly for the homeless, literally. Many die from being out in these cold months. But it's not just have a home, it's being able to afford to put the heating on , at least for a little while in during the winter. And those who need it most, namely the elderly, who spend the majority of their time indoors, are the ones sometimes, who are least able to afford  to keep warm.
7. Only three more to go. Number seven , but actually first on my list, because it is just me. I'm so thankful for my faith. And for God who believes in me. Something a friend said comes to mind. Her son said I'm not going to pray, I don't believe in your God anymore, it's all rubbish. She turned to him and said, well, that's ok, because God still believes in you. Magic...
8. I am thankful for my parents and my grandparents who have gone before me. They have made me who I am . Some very special people there
9. I ma thankful for birdsong . I can hear it as I sit here writing and it cheers my spirit no end.
10.And I am hugely thankful for people creating blog posts like this one - TTOT - that I can get involved with and that wakes up my little grey cells.

So, thank you everyone. I can't wait to see all your posts and see what you are all thankful for.

Friday, January 18, 2019

Tape

18th Jan 2019
It's Friday Fictioneers again . Not sure what to make of the photo prompt.


 

Tape
She'd only dozed off for a few minutes, surely. She looked at her phone - 16.03. Where were the boys? It was too quiet. Rising from the sofa, heart pounding she surveyed the scene, where an hour and a half ago they'd been constructing junk models. She stepped on the beginnings of a robot, and next to it a castle in the making. Tape creatively decorated the door - a map, maybe?  But where were they. She ran up the stairs two at a time. There on her bed she found two little boys,  taped together and fast asleep. And breathing peacefully.

Wednesday, January 16, 2019

Well Blessed



16th Jan 2019



Well Blessed - My Birthday

ImageYesterday was my birthday. I didn't realise the number I'd reached was a significant number.
So I was taken by surprise at the amount of attention it ( I ) was given.
From the first moment, when my thoughtful husband gave me my card and then a present. It's not something we normally do, giving each other presents, unless it's a special birthday, so I was delighted to get this unexpected gift - a small, portable, old- fashioned radio which I've been wanting for sometime. So useful, in the house, for taking with me to whichever room I'm in and also just right for taking with us on our jaunts in the camper. It's beautiful and a bit retro - I love it.

I did make myself a tasty breakfast. Quite often don't have breakfast , or maybe just a bowl of porridge, because, well, you know it's "good for you". I very rarely have anything cooked ( yes, I know technically,  porridge is cooked, but it sort of doesn't count) and I'd never had this  before although I'd wanted to try it for a some time:
Baked egg and avocado - delicious
 Image result for pictures of baked egg and avocado


Then the joy, walking into my writing group and being sung to by my lovely writer friends. If it wasn't for Facebook that probably wouldn't of happened. And it was a great session too.
After stretching my mind for a bit with character study,  home to pick more cards up from the mat . So many cards... and such a lot of well wishing.  I was a little overwhelmed .
In the afternoon a visit form a dear friend with flowers, chocolates, another card and stories ( that's the best bit).                                                                                                      
Image

Eight grandchildren for lunch with their two mums . And again more cards homemade this time- love the homemade ones- and cake and the children brought a little game that we could all play with. Proper party style.

Then in the evening a visit from two sons - hugs and stories to share. And also during the evening,  phone calls from those other children who, with living further away didn't get to see me.

And finally a gorgeous Indian meal with a beautiful daughter. She helped us make wise choices  from the take away menu, which turned out to be just right. Oh, and with the meal a glass ( or was it two) of red ..
But it's not the things I got, which is neither her nor there - I'm not materialistic at all - it's the fact that people, especially my wonderful family think of me. I feel so appreciated.

I am truly well blessed . Don't know how come I deserve so much love.  xxx




Friday, January 11, 2019

Tiggy

12th Jan

I happen to love cats, always have. Trouble is, in my adult life I developed an allergy to them and being  in a house where cats live for more than half an hour will bring on an asthma attack, which is a pity as a lot of my friends have cats. 
We had a very intelligent cat called Tiggy when I was a child and how we came by him is a bit like the story below.

Tiggy

"Don't ask again. I've said no and that's that."
Well, the three sister's didn't want it to be no and even though dad had been so adamant, they found themselves in the pet shop staring at the little kittens as they did every afternoon on the way home from school.
Soon they would be ready to leave the pet shop and  all but one had a new  home to go to . The girl's spent a long time watching them feeding and playing with their mum, all the time getting  to know their different characters and falling  in love with the each one, but especially the sweet little tabby who was still waiting for someone to come and claim him. In a few days he and the others would be eight weeks old and he'd be left behind when his brothers and sisters went to their new families.
Short-coated Gray Cat
"I've got enough money, shall we just buy him," Susan, eleven and the eldest, picked little kitty up in her arms, held him to her breast and stroked him lovingly.
"We can't ...no...dad'll kill us," Barbara, nine,  spoke in a higher pitch then normal, while Lucy, eight nodded her head in excitement while jumping from one foot to the other.
"But he won't find out," replied Susan, "I've got a plan." She bent,  kissed the kitten on his nose and like talking to a baby she said,  "I've got a little plan haven't I?"
"What is it, tell us?" Barbara was all ears. Maybe there was a chance, she thought, maybe they could keep him.
"Well, you know dad's garage is full of stuff and he hardly ever goes in it?"
"Yeh, so?"
"He could live in there. We could go feed him everyday,  make a little home for him, you know, with blankets and things." She'd been trying to think of a way and she was pretty sure that this scheme would work , but Barbara was still unsure.
"What if dad finds him?" Out of the three sisters she was the most fearful of her father.
"He won't. We'll have to be extra careful though. Like, we'll have to sneak out when they are busy or wait till Dad goes to collect Mum from work. We can do it." She put the kitten back and looked pleadingly at her sisters. For although she'd made her mind up to get him , she needed them on her side if the plan was going to work.
"Yes, yes... let's... go on ..." Lucy couldn't stop herself from bouncing up and down.
They had to run home, which wasn't easy with the carrier with the kitten inside.  Susan hadn't bargained on all the questions she would be asked about their ability to care for him.
By the time they'd  finished making Tiggy, for that was the name they gave him, comfortable in a dark corner of the garage behind some boxes of old books and some electrical equipment, there was only a few minutes to spare before their father walked in. Susan got him his cup of tea as usual and he suspected nothing. When he went out to pick up their mother, they scoured the fridge for suitable tidbits for their new guest.
But, of course this situation couldn't last forever and one evening about two months later, after Susan had fed and watered Tiggy her mum went into the garden with rubbish for the bins. It was Lucy's job, but she was feeling unwell that day.
"Where is that meowing coming from?" She walked towards the garage. The sister's heard her and readied themselves for the outburst.
"And what have we here? " She held Tiggy awkwardly by the scruff of his neck, like he was vermin.
 "What's the meaning of this?" she demanded, holding the poor kitten, squealing and kicking, at arms length.
"Mum, we've been looking after him. We got him from the pet shop, he's.."
"I don't care! He's got to go back . He's not staying here!"
Just then dad walked in.
" Mags, what's all the fuss? What..." he spotted the kitten in mum's hand. "Where did that come from?"
"You may well ask," mum nodded towards the guilty parties, "found him in the garage . The girls had him hidden behind your old books. Don't know what they were thinking,"  then stepping closer to them and shouting, "what were you thinking??"
"Dad, we can look after him, please, please...  can we keep him... please??" Susan put her hands together like in prayer. The others kept quiet.
"No!. Now we said no. You disregarded your mother and I and went behind our backs.  I'm not happy with you. Go to your rooms." He took Tiggy from mum and sat on the sofa stroking him. "Tomorrow he goes back.
"But dad, please..." Susan used her most pleading voice.
"Bed!"
They all marched upstairs. They all cried for a lot of the night. Susan slept in her sisters room squeezed in beside Lucy.
In the morning they woke early . They hadn't slept much and their eyes were red and sore.
Between them they wrote a letter to their dad, with the hope that this might change his mind. It was their last hope.
When they heard him in the kitchen they crept downstairs to give him the letter.
"Ahh girls. Right, sit yourself down there."
"Dad, we.." Susan handed him the letter but he just put in on the table.
"Be quiet now and let me speak." He sat across from them and folded his arms in his serious pose. They knew that he meant business.
"Your mother and I talked a lot last night about what you'd done.."
"Dad..."
"Stop interrupting me. We are not happy that you were deceitful, but you have shown love for the little kitten and you've looked after him well , we can see that. So, as long as you take full responsibility for him, he can stay."
There was lots of hugs and thank yous as three little girls jumped all over their dad and promised that he wouldn't be sorry.
"If he interferes with me at all, he'll have to go," mum's voice was soft . "He can have a place in the corner of the kitchen. How long did you think you'd be able to keep him locked up in the garage, for goodness sake?"
Tiggy became a part of the family after that and when the girls grew up and left home, he was still there to keep mum and dad company and although mum wouldn't admit it,  she was his favourite person, the one who's lap he would sit on and purr contentedly.



Thursday, January 10, 2019

Shells


10th Jan 2019

I have just found Friday Fictioneers. The idea on this site is to write a story in exactly one hundred words. There is a prompt to get you started.
So, I thought I'd have a go.

Shells

"What about this one Grams?"
"Wow, love that. Put it here, in the bag."
Chrissie runs on the beach, looks for more shells, forgetting,
 for the moment, to be sad.
The waves rush in. And within me an ocean rises up to meet them.
I wipe tears from my eyes.
Musn't let her see me cry. She's only three and the enormity of what's
 happened washes over her.
For just these moments she is free.
She run's towards me.
"Gram's, I'm so cold. Can we go home?"
I pick her up, hold her close, burying  my face in her coat.
And wonder, Can we?

Dark

10th Jan 2019

Just a few words to match my mood this morning:

There is so much dark

Dark in the sky,
Dark in my mind
Dark in my soul
Dark in through the windows, through all windows

Dark back through years
Dark behind all the tears
Dark whilst standing in the sun
Dark whilst having so much fun

Where is the light to see by
Where is the light to show the way
Where is the light to reveal the joy
Hidden deep and locked away

He is the light, he helps us see
He is the light, he shows the way
He is the light , he reveals the joy
He can no longer be hidden away

Move dear soul so you can see
Move dear heart to find the way
Move dear child, reveal the joy
Move, hide no more, come into the day

Tuesday, January 8, 2019

Epiphany

8th Jan 2019

Well, Christmas is over and the decorations - tree , cards, wall hangings have been taken down. All gone except for the crib. The crib will stay until 2nd Feb.

Epiphany 

The Feast of the Epiphany 6th January- we were at our daughter's - was a wonderful  celebration .
Mass first thing, coffee and biscuits in the hall after, where Peter and I had a strange conversation with an interesting  chap we hadn't met before who is a musician, who converted to Catholicism eight years ago. He told us his conversion story which started way back in an evangelical upbringing. He spent many years searching for the more authenticity,  moving from one domination to the next, until he ended up in the Catholic church, which he now says is his home.
"What can I do to help, " I take my coat off and follow  my daughter into the kitchen, where she is already surrounded by bowls, mixers, weighing scales and everything needed to make cheesecake.
" Could you take that bowl there. There's red onions and tomatoes in the fridge . You can slice them all up and put them in there." And so I did, adding some balsamic viniger to taste.
After that we spent about three hours getting the food ready for the party later. For most of that time I kept my head down and washed up , and washed up , keeping the area clean so Em and some of the girls could just get on.
In between times different children came in and helped themselves to something to eat, after all it would be a long time till the party.
The long table is decorated with a Christmas table cloth and candles with a place even for the baby Jesus. It looks just perfect.
We take a moment to have a coffee, but not for long as the first visitor arrives and now the table in the kitchen is strewn with everything needed to make beautiful kings crowns, with glittery jewels to stick on .
They are dressed in kings robes to play their role . Happy children.
Finally everyone is here and I am swaddled in the comfortable chatter and buzz that is my lovely family - children, grandchildren, niece, great niece and nephew, and sister-in-law. We drink what looks like pink champagne and catch up on stories. A blessed time, which passes all too quickly.
The food ?- amazing , of course. But the company is the main thing.
When people start to leave I get sad.
Later hubby and I take ourselves out to our camper, which is parked up on the drive and go to bed. We are both emotional and teary eyed at what a great family we have.